Audio Recording "Grandmother, I want one of your quilts."

About this Item

"Grandmother, I want one of your quilts."
Contributor Names
Johnson, Geraldine Niva, 1940- (Interviewer)
Choate, Donna. (Interviewee)
Choate, Donna. (Creator)
Created / Published
Sparta, North Carolina
Subject Headings
-  Gifts
-  Ethnography
-  Interviews
-  United States -- North Carolina -- Sparta
-  Donna Choate is an African-American woman who learned to quilt from her mother who was taught to piece quilts by the white family who raised her. Although at the time of the interview Mrs. Choate had not made quilts for several years, she describes the process, both as her mother practiced it and as she had done it herself. Mrs. Choate had made both utility and fancy quilts, for the use of her family, not for sale.
-  Transcription: DC: So, now the reason I don't have more, I'll give my children my children, I just have the one daughter I gave her quilts, and the grandchildren want, "Grandmother, I want a quilt, one of your quilts." Well, I give them one. So, I, my quilts are down. And I'm not planning to make any more. I tell Sabe, I said I'm not going to make any more quilts. If we die when we ought to, I've got enough to take care of us. [laughter] But I say people don't use, don't have to have as many as they used to. They had, their houses were not warm, and it took a lot of cover. And now, everybody's got furnace heat, or some kind, steam, some kind of heat. And about a couple of these quilts or maybe one this quilt, a blanket, and a sheet I use a sheet because I don't want to get the lining soiled. You can't they'll wash, but this cotton will wad up in there when they get wet. So I don't want to get my quilts dirty. So I sleep next to a sheet, then a blanket on top of it, and then the quilt. And that way my quilts won't get old and dirty looking. / GJ: You said you've given a lot of them to your family. Do you ever sell any? / DC: No. No, I've never sold a quilt. I've just give 'em to the children. I've got three grown granddaughters. Is that right? No. I just have one daughter. And she has three daughters and a son. She's got four, four children. And I gave them quilts. And I don't want the great-grandchildren I think I've got five great-grandchildren and I don't want them come asking grandma "I want a quilt." [laughter] Grandma's past the age for making 'em.
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Sound tape reel : 7 in.
Call Number/Physical Location
AFC 1982/009: BR8-GJ-R94
Source Collection
Blue Ridge Parkway Folklife Project Collection (AFC 1982/009)
American Folklife Center
Online Format

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Blue Ridge Parkway Folklife Project collection, 1977-1981 (AFC 1982/009), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Lands' End all-American quilt collection, 1992-1997 (AFC 1997/011), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

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Chicago citation style:

Johnson, Geraldine Niva, Donna Choate, and Donna Choate. "Grandmother, I want one of your quilts.". Sparta, North Carolina, 1978. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, (Accessed March 27, 2017.)

APA citation style:

Johnson, G. N., Choate, D. & Choate, D. (1978) "Grandmother, I want one of your quilts.". Sparta, North Carolina. [Audio] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Johnson, Geraldine Niva, Donna Choate, and Donna Choate. "Grandmother, I want one of your quilts.". Sparta, North Carolina, 1978. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.